14 December 2016 marks the forty-second anniversary of the adoption of the UN General Assembly Resolution “Definition of Aggression” (3314 (XXIX)).
Having illegally occupied the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol and carried out further military intervention in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions, the Russian Federation initiated an unprovoked military aggression against Ukraine. The Russian Federation thus has blatantly violated its international obligations and commitments as envisaged by the UN Charter, the 1975 CSCE Helsinki Final Act, the 1994 Budapest Memorandum, and the 1997 Treaty on Friendship, Cooperation, and Partnership between Ukraine and the Russian Federation. The Russian Federation has not only violated the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of Ukraine – it has threatened international peace and security at large. The third year of Russia’s military aggression continues to bring pain and suffering to the people of Ukraine of all ethnic backgrounds. The total number of victims of this undeclared war in the heart of Europe exceeds 10 thousand.
In view of this, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine continues to affirm, in clear and unequivocal terms, that the occupation and subsequent attempt to annex the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol, as well as Russia’s illegal actions in Donbas, fall squarely under the definition of an act of aggression, in line with the provisions of paragraphs (а), (b), (c), (d), (e) and (g) of Article 3 of the Annex to UN General Assembly Resolution 3314 (XXIX). Such actions constitute the most serious crime against international peace, which entails international responsibility of the Russian Federation as a state and international criminal responsibility of its senior leadership.
The Russian Federation is a party to an international armed conflict currently underway in our country, and the political and military leadership of Russia bears full responsibility for its planning, preparation, initiation and waging, as well as responsibility for numerous human casualties, material damage and destruction.
No political, economic or military considerations can justify the treacherous Russian aggression against Ukraine. War cannot be a means of doing politics in the twenty-first century.
Ukraine is grateful to the Member States of the United Nations for their consistent and strong support in countering Russian aggression and overcoming its consequences. We call for increasing international pressure on the Russian Federation in order to stop the aggression and bring about complete withdrawal from the territory of Ukraine of the Russian armed forces, Russia-controlled illegal armed groups and mercenaries, along with weapons and military equipment deployed in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol (Ukraine) or illegally transferred to the terrorist organizations "DNR" and "LNR", as well as to revoke all acts aimed at legitimizing the attempted annexation of the Crimean peninsula and to undertake its further de-occupation.
Only Ukraine’s full control over the entire length of its state border and firm guarantees of its sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence can safeguard international peace and security.